Wednesday night in Omaha was supposed to be Sean Loeffler‘s UFC debut, but instead he ended up with a nasty ankle injury and no fight.
While warming up in the back, Loeffler injured his ankle just moments before his scheduled fight with Team Jackson fighter Buddy Roberts, forcing the bout to be canceled.
Needless to say, Loeffler was disappointed in the turn of events. He explained he was just warming up in the back when a wrong step turned into a wrong fall, and the next thing he knew his UFC debut was off.
“I was doing ‘tuck jumps’ backstage. My foot got caught in a crack in the warm-up mat, and it rolled over and snapped in half. Trevor Wittman and Urijah Faber were there, the whole locker room heard it pop,” Loeffler explained.
“Fortunately, the ankle’s not broken. It’s a 3rd degree fibula/tibia strain. There’s about a 50/50 chance I’ll have surgery, but we won’t know until after I get an MRI. I don’t know how long I’ll be out, but Joe Silva has told me that I am 100% a UFC fighter, and that I’ll be back with them.”
The downside for Loeffler was hurting his ankle literally just minutes before his UFC debut. The positive for Loeffler was the UFC’s decision to pay him his ‘show’ money regardless of the fight happening or not.
“I very much appreciate that. I’d like to thank Dana White, Joe Silva, and the rest of the UFC for standing by me through this. They paid me my show money even though I got injured. I appreciate that so much, and I won’t forget it. And to the fans, I will be back, better than ever, as soon as possible. I’m in the UFC to stay, and even though the ankle injury sucked, it shows that everything I do will always be memorable,” Loeffler said with a laugh.
Due to the nature of the injury, it’s hard to say when Loeffler will be able to return to action. If the MRI reveals bad news, Loeffler may need to undergo ankle surgery, which would obviously delay his return to the Octagon.
Either way, Loeffler believes he will be out long enough that opponent Buddy Roberts will likely move on to a new fight.
“As far as I know, Buddy is healthy, so I doubt they’re going to make him wait for me. I have no idea who the UFC wants for me next, but regardless, I need to get healthy and then we’ll deal with it. I was ready for Buddy, so if he’s next, I will be ready for him again,” Loeffler commented.
Loeffler will undergo the MRI with his doctors and then a decision will be made for his next move to get back into the UFC Octagon.